South Africa's New Dating App Allows Women to Take Control

Holding hands | © / Unsplash
Holding hands | © / Unsplash
Photo of Andrew Thompson
Freelance Writer - February 2018

Dating, and dating apps, are hardly a new invention. With the likes of Tinder and Bumble dominating dating scenes around the world, it seems unlikely that there’s much space for anyone else. But one company from South Africa believes that their compatibility checks, speedy connections and women-friendly approach will turn the concept on its head.

Although the introduction of new apps may have upped the ante, dating through the ages has always been tricky, and there’s always been a certain level of superficiality. It’s no secret that users mislead others in their profile in order to win favour from others.

Tinder still dominates the dating app world | © / Unsplash

Many businesspeople, including Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe, have attempted to introduce some balance between genders on modern dating apps, to avoid misunderstandings and abuse. Wolfe did so to dramatic success: according to Business Insider, the businesswoman who left Tinder to go it alone has just turned down a $450 million buyout offer.

Meanwhile, a team of South Africans believes they may have a better solution to some of the challenges of the dating app world, which not only keeps the balance of favour towards women, but can also organise you a date within minutes, Uber-style.

The free app, called Predict Dating, puts user biographies front and centre, unlike many other apps that focus on photographs. According to the founder Ayal Belling, placing an emphasis on words on the user profiles means that people are more inclined to share honest written insights about themselves.

Although this approach is not drastically different to other dating apps, there are several features built in to Predict that aim to prevent misunderstandings, make your intentions clear and provide insight into the views of others.

On registration, Predict asks a series of broad and focussed questions relating to homophobia, interests, background, history, economic views, children, religion and whether you’re looking for a casual or serious relationship; users then have the option to filter out those who answer differently to them. Predict also trawls users’ Facebook and Twitter accounts to determine a percentage match that aims to give you an idea of how suitable you would be for one another.

Broaden your love interest horizons with Tinder | © Disarm / Pixabay

But perhaps the most enticing promise the app makes is its desire to deliver Uber-like dates to users. According to Belling, he wants people to open up the app and arrange a date within an hour or two, if that’s what they are looking for.

Though the failure or success of an app such as this hinges on acquiring a critical mass of users, many are touting it as the first dating app that not only puts compatibility first, but also truly allows women to take control of who they match with.